As I type this, Sony cameras don’t have a very good reputation in the category of video. Their cameras are not the most high-resolution, don’t support the full dynamic range of most video codecs, and so are not the most flexible on what the user needs to do. In addition, most of their camera bodies are not the most versatile, either; the Alpha A7S, A7R III series, and R7.5 have very high price tags compared to Nikon cameras.
Most of the cameras currently made do not have a decent battery life — they may last a few hours on a full charge, but they can often die in less than an hour or two. Sony just released the Alpha A9, a high-capacity power-saving model with a slightly better battery life profile. It has a much higher maximum aperture than most other current Sony cameras.
Nikon cameras are similar to Sony in that their cameras don’t shoot very well when it comes to video. But their cameras can handle some higher-resolution videos, but they’re better than most of the current offerings. You’ll need a powerful CPU and a small hard drive space (3 TB is typical) to download and transfer video files. And remember that not all video programs support all formats as the Nikon’s did a couple years back.
Sony’s current camera bodies are designed very much like the DSC-H1 at the moment. They can produce very good quality video, but they don’t have great battery life. But if you want to do some very intensive things (like create a video using the RAW or JPEG image, and edit it after-the-fact with a computer) then they are a very good value. But if you don’t mind spending a little bit more money in the end, the Sony’s will give you the best bang-for-the-buck in the medium format market — and that’s all they can really offer right now.
How long has the Sony digital cinema camera revolution been underway?
So far over 100 cameras have been launched and released in the space of 18 months; the last few years has seen the introduction of the new Nex system to compete with Sony’s DSC-H1. There have been some great cameras on the market and a great new generation of photographers developing them with a lot of technical focus (some of the new models will be released to photographers this summer). But that’s where the Sony entry in the medium format space ends. There’s